Yesterday I woke up, bright, early, and on a mission. Weeks earlier I had been invited to participate as a vendor at a local wellness fair. I gladly accepted, and figured I had weeks to plan. Except of course, that I forgot all about the fair, never mind planning for it, until the night before the event. But I wasn’t worried, for you see, last minute is often when I do my best work. This is also how I made my way through college with two young children: writing papers at 5:30 am before anyone else was awake.
Side note: I bought this sign the other day, I couldn’t resist. It shall hang in all of its glory in my office…whenever I get around to hanging it.
Anyway, I’ve never attended one of these fairs as a presenter, but I’ve been to enough race expos to be considered a professional expo-goer (is that a thing?), and know that all people really want out of these events is to take free stuff home with them. So I dutifully printed up some really rad infographics and sheets about topics such as “how to squeeze more physical activity in your day” and “How much exercise do I really need?” (A minimum of 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise per week, spread over a minimum of three days and at a minimum of 10 minutes at a time, plus two days of strength training. In case you were wondering.) I also packed up my handheld bioelectrical impedance analysis, because I clearly remember one of my professors saying that these gadgets weren’t incredibly accurate, but they were great to have if you ever have to attend a wellness fair.
I went over to Staples, ran off a few hundred copies of said printouts, and headed to the wellness fair. As it turned out, my infographics were no competition for the numerous insurance agencies and their free pens, frisbees, and reusable shopping bags covered in their company logos. Not many people cared to look at the awesome information I had printed out, but everyone wanted their turn on the BIA.
Turns out, *I* hated the fact that I brought the damn thing. I felt like an asshole, introducing myself, telling someone they are 44% body fat and completely off the charts (the bad end of the chart), then sending them on their way. What a great first impression. I’m all for the necessity of facing the reality of your health situation, but I’m also a fan of respecting the fact that weight often comes with a lot of emotion. I felt like a jerk. An enthusiastic jerk, but a jerk none the less.
But as my boyfriends awesome mother reminded me, this was indeed a great learning experience. “How to present yourself at a wellness expo” was not a topic covered in school (other than the handy BIA tip) so I was kind of flying solo. And what better way to learn than through trial and ( a good bit of) error? So for future reference:
1) Bring gobs of free shwag to grab people’s attention(next time I’m getting my logo printed on something truly epic, like stress-reliever-squeeze balls or maybe even lunchboxes, and then I’m going to make people burpee to earn them.)
2) Bring a table cloth to make my space look semi professional. Who knew that would be an obvious “thing”?
3) Leave the body fat gadget at home. Tell people they are beautiful, but need to MOVE more.
I did, however, meet some great people, new professional contacts, and potential clients, so the morning was not a total bust due to my lack of preparedness.
After the wellness fair, I went to the gym and began to punish my legs. It’s been a long time since I had a good leg workout. Squats, deadlifts, and hill sprints. Then I spent the first two hours of my work shift arguing with my intern over the difference between insoles and outer-soles of running sneakers, and that type of tread is based on activity, not the pronation status of the runner. Long story, you had to be there, but I definitely pulled the “I KNOW shoes, these Sauconys on my feet were just released two weeks ago!” card, which again, made me look like an asshole. But an asshole who knows a thing or two about shoes. My intern and I argue a lot…and I truly appreciate it. She challenges my knowledge, which forces me to brush up on my studies, and reminds me of things I was tested on years ago and consequently immediately flushed from my memory.
Exercising the brain is important too.
Then I cleaned some treadmills, folded some towels, demonstrated proper low row technique, discussed at what age a kid who is obsessed with the military needs to watch Stalingrad for a reality check, vacuumed, went home, ate pizza, and went to bed.
You know how some lifestyle bloggers will spend an entire post telling you the most obscure parts of their day? This was my version, hope you enjoyed.
Also, Geoff and I are running Tough Mudder on June 1st in Mt. Snow. Everything you thought you knew about me was wrong. Hell,everything I thought I knew about me was wrong. I bet there is still snow on that mountain.
Have a great weekend everyone 🙂